6 Reasons Why Everyone Is Cheering for Chalk-Finish

Discover why chalkboard-finish paint is a versatile easy-to-use option that's all the rage among interior designers and homeowners.

By Benjamin St. Jacques


Have you heard about chalk-finish paint? It’s been around since 1990, and since then, it’s gained a devoted fan base who tout it as a convenient, easy-to-use alternative to traditional latex and oil-based paints. Everyone from crafters to professional designers have been using it to make their world more colorful with less work.


Chalk-finish paint is so named because of the soft matte finish it creates. Don’t confuse it with chalk board paint, which creates surfaces that can be written on with chalk.


But enough with the explanations! Let’s get to the fun part. Here are six reasons you need chalk-finish in your life:


1. No Prep Work Needed

I repeat. No. Prep. Work. Needed. This reason might be all it takes to make anyone a chalk-finish convert. With this paint, there’s no sanding, scraping, or priming beforehand. You can open the can of paint, dip your brush, and start painting. It will nicely cover old paint, glossy finishes, and anything distressed. That’s why it’s so perfect for bringing old pieces of furniture back to life.



Photoy courtesy of frenchcountry-fatbottomgirls.me


2. Dries Super-Fast

You can apply two coats of chalk-finish to a decent-sized piece of furniture like a table or large desk in two hours, and that includes drying time. Three coats would take about three hours. In fact, a good rule of thumb for chalk-finish is to add an hour for every coat, including drying time.



Photo courtesy of chalkpaintideas.com


3. Versatile Style

Chalk-finish has gained a solid reputation among the “shabby chic” crowd because it lends itself to being easily distressed. However, chalk-finish is so much more versatile than that. You can use it to create a clean and smooth modern look. Or, you can crackle chalk-finish for an antique look. Maybe do something more bold and funky if you like. You can even customize pieces with hand painted designs or stencils. There are no limits to the styles you can create with a chalk-finish.



Photo courtesy of sabrinasorganizing.com


4. You Can Paint Anything

Chalk-finish sticks well to almost any surface with no prep work required! You can paint metal, glass, plastic, linoleum, ceramic, steel, walls, finished and unfinished wood, laminate, tile, and the list goes on. This list may vary slightly depending on the brand of chalk-finish you buy so be sure to read labels.



Photo by dreamstime


5. There’s a Cavalcade of Colors

When chalk-finish first arrived in stores, it was only available in a handful of colors. Today, all brands of chalk-finish offer a wide variety of color choices, from ravishing reds to lovely lavenders to grassy greens. Plus, you can easily mix colors at home to lighten darken colors, or experiment with multiple colors to create truly unique hue.



Photo courtesy of Amber DeGrace


6. Easy Cleanup

Chalk-finish is water-based, so it just takes a little bit of plain soap and water to remove drips and spills from clothes, skin, even the piece you’re working on. So, if you make a mistake, just clean it off and start over! Between the no prep, and the easy cleanup, I wouldn’t be surprised if you were already on your way to the paint store right now.



Photo by bigstock


Here’s more good news about chalk-finish. It’s easy to find. You can buy chalk-finish at most major paint retailers and at your local craft store or hobby shop. So, there’s no reason to put off that painting project any longer. Get some chalk-finish and get creative!

Next: How to Choose Upholstery Fabric